VENICE under political and jet-setter attack!

This year’s Venice Biennale, attracted as always critics, curators, gallerists, collectors and the press, but it attracted  also some of the world’s leading political figures to the exhibitions in the Giardini, Arsenale and around the city. Shimon Peres, the president of Israel, and Cristina Fernandez Kirchner, the president of Argentina, were visiting Venice. Cristina Kirchner signed during a cocktail at Ca’ Giustinian a lease for 25 years for the new Argentine Pavilion in the Arsenale .

The Giardini showed some of the most politically-oriented national pavilions of recent years, with several countries, including Poland, Egypt, Israel, Denmark and the US, opting for hard-hitting takes on current affairs. One of the most overpowering pieces in the Giardini is an enormous, upturned tank, created by the Puerto Rican-based duo, Allora and Calzadilla. Periodically its engine is switched on, the tracks turn, and a member of the US Track and Field team runs on top, as if on a giant treadmill.

The Arsenale section of “Illuminazioni”, as befits the cavernous space, are of a larger and more dramatic scale. Some of the highlights were the 24hs film by Christian Marclay, the argentine Adrian Villar Rojas and some very interesting arab artists.

Parallel to the official pavilions there was Pan Arab exhibition “Future of a Promise” curated by Lina Lazar, which was excellent and right next to it an exhibition of Emilio Vedova and Kiefer (see left), both great.

Another outstanding exhibition was the Tapestry Exhibition at San Giorgio, were a 20 mt strong and fabulous creation by Grayson Perry was exhibited (see below). In addition to that pieces by Marc Quinn and Carlos Garaicoa were also exhibited, a true gem.

Palazzo Fortuny with Axel and Boris Vervoordt geniality was also great.

Last but not least this year Venice saw an increase of lavishing parties and jet – setters from all over the world, creating a global chaos. Absolutely NO taxi boats available during the entire week, as almost all where taken “for the week” and some went to the highest  bidder,  paying 5000 euro and more a day…And the public transport strike the first day of the Biennale was the cherry on top!